Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Learning at the Hospital

I had family in the hospital for the last 10 days for some major surgery and recovery. It's been a learning experience.

1. Being surrounded with positive people is so important. One negative person sticks out and can ruin the day. In education experts say students need at least a 5:1 ratio of positive to negative talk. In the hospital one...less than encouraging...employee ups that ratio to maybe 20:1.

2. Life is more flexible than we think. With this unexpected hosptial event it was amazing how free my schedule suddenly became. The dishes, laundry, garden, shopping, reading, and cooking all have managed to wait. I didn't see my garden in day light for about 5 days and it is doing fine. It did get watered, but even missing some weeding was ok. I'm so thankful I could have so much time free, but wonder how much more free time I could have on occassion if I felt like it was really necessary.

3. Make time to let people know how your feel. This lesson is two fold. One, you never know when circumstances could change and there is no time like the present. Second, people that take the time to let you know that they care for you, your family, and that you are important to them make such a big impact every time. Five minute visits, phone calls, get well cards all are so easy to do, yet so easy to overlook. The reward for time spent letting someone know you care is worth it.

4. Real growth can hurt. Growing doesn't always have to hurt, but pruning and refining our bodies, minds, attitudes and relationships often does. Recovery in the hospital (though I've never experienced it) is painful, exhausting, and frustruating both mentally and physically. One can go from hiking and biking without any work have to fight to breathe and take steps. If nothing is hurting right now that might be a blessing. However, ask yourself, is there something that you shoud be growing in. It might hurt and it will definatly be hard work, but it is always worth it.

5. Faith reigns. It is easy to have a relaxed faith and float through our daily lives. When life throws a curve ball having a strong faith in God helps because nothing is out of His control. Those moments and hours on your knees are precious to Him. Our family got an email just before the surgery from a friend that said either way, today will be a great day. Surgery might not go as planned and a loved one might be ushered into God's presence. Surgery could go well and we'll be able to spend more time with a loved one. As sobering as those possibilities are, he was right. Both would be ok. I would dearly miss time if things hadn't gone so well, but in the eternal realm it wouldn't be goodbye, just see you later!

I know my God saved the day

I know his word never fails

I know my God made a way for me

We're going to be alright.

~Lincoln Brewster (got to love Pandora playing those perfect songs at the right time!)